Class raises money for hurricane relief

Unity Junior High School teacher Heather Ennis’ eighth-grade Quest class recently designed a service project to raise hundreds of dollars that they will donate to the American Red Cross for hurricane relief.
Late last month, the class began by brainstorming ideas for various possible service projects.

Unity homecoming week’s activities scheduled

Unity High School is celebrating Homecoming 2017 the week of Sept. 11 through 16. Student Council chose the theme “Journey to the Jungle” and is sponsoring dress-up days to promote the energy that always surrounds a Rocket Homecoming. Monday is Patriot Monday in honor and memory of Sept. 11, Patriot Day.

Meet the new staffers at area schools

In an effort to help our readers get to know the new staff members at area schools better, The County Star submitted a variety of questions to them.

Read the full story in the Sept. 7 issue of The County Star.

Members endorse tentative budget

The Unit 7 school board on Wednesday unanimously approved a tentative version of the fiscal year 2017-28 budget, which will be on display Aug. 18 to Sept. 20, when a public hearing will be held on it before final approval.

Budget ended with positive figures

Despite the state’s financial woes, the Unit 7 school district is maintaining a positive fund balance at the end of the fiscal year.
Superintendent Andy Larson told the school board Wednesday that the education, building and transportation funds all have positive balances.
“We’re in a place 95 percent of the districts are not,” Larson said.

Officials approved updated Title I plan

The Unit 7 school board has approved an updated version of the district’s Title I plan, which is required to receive Title I and Title II funding under the Every Student Succeeds Act.
Title I provides funding to school districts to meet the needs of at-risk and low-income students.

Unity Junior High bringing ‘escape room’ concept to classroom

Escape rooms have been gaining popularity throughout the U.S. In the recreational team sport, groups of people are given a limited amount of time to “break out” of a locked room. They use clues provided in the room and cooperate to solve the puzzle.
A company called Breakout EDU has found a way to use the idea in the classroom with kits.

Carrie Busey holds bell ringing ceremony to mark end of school year

For the first time in 71 years, the sound of a school bell reverberated at a Savoy school last week.
“We’re going to use symbolism today to end the school year,” Principal Jeff Scott told students last Thursday.
Scott reflected on the last school year and how much students have learned.

Read the full story in the June 1 issue of The County Star.

Four graduate from St. Thomas School in Philo

“A small group but a mighty group” of four graduated from St. Thomas Catholic School on Friday night.
The term bestowed by Principal Lisa Doughan referred to Evelyn Atkins, Evan LeFaivre, Mercedes Rentschler and Matt Stricklin, the Class of 2017. The quartet led the readings and prayers during a Mass that preceded the graduation ceremony.

Unit 7 bonds for high school improvements

The Unit 7 school board has borrowed $3 million in the bond market to pay for infrastructure improvements at Unity High School.
David Pistorius, senior vice president at First Midstate Inc., the bond underwriter the school district used, reported that the net interest cost was 3.35 percent.
“I’m real pleased,” Pistorius said.

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